Monday, July 31, 2006

Prepared for A Tough Week

This weekend was spent preparing for the week. I have an exam, a quiz, a paper, and a project due this week. I feel confident that I am ready or will be with only a little extra effort. I have finished all my reading for the week as well. This is a vastly different approach to my studies, than my constant procrastination in undergrad. I am not quite sure what the difference is, but I am hoping to keep up this pace.

Last Friday I had a great time eating, drinking, and dancing with some friends from my program. Saturday, I learned how to swim! It is not that I couldn't swim before, it is that I learned how to be an efficient swimmer. A wonderful woman from my program showed me how the pros do it and it made all the difference. I swam further than I have throughout my training and did not get nearly as tired. I have about six weeks till my triathlon and I am getting nervous and excited. I am also excited about not having to wake up so early every morning to get a workout in. The days are getting shorter and I am spending more and more time in the dark.

Today we had a great speaker in my Global Strategic Management class. A man named Dave from the Haier America Company, spoke to us about his experience with the company. The company has a great history concerning its growth and expansion into a global company.

The amazing thing that is happening over the next couple of weeks, is that I am finishing my first couple of courses and starting new ones. The rate at which these courses and weeks are flying by is awesome.

Lastly, my Nike+Ipod device is awesome!! I have made two runs with it and it tracks all kinds of great data. I wish I had a easy way to connect my bike and swim information to my computer and then have all three sports compared to each other. With an all-in-one device/program, I could compare speed power output, calories burned, duration, and some other variables. Those guys at Apple need to get on it, because I am ready for it!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Technology Is Connecting Me to Myself

In class we often talk about how the "World is Flat", with the advance of technology around the World. However, today I got the ability to connect to myself with new technology. What do I mean?

Today, I received my Nike+. It is a device that plugs into my Ipod and tracks my running with a device on my shoe. After running, you plug in your Ipod to your computer and it downloads your information. At this point, you can go to your account to look at your most recent workout or any previous workout. I believe will hold up to one thousand workouts. I will be using this device over the weekend, which will give me time to really look at how it works and tracks my progress. I love this stuff!

On the school front, I have a Globalization and Corporate Responsibility quiz tomorrow. I am not nervous about it, since it is a short answer test. I know I can write about anything, which makes a written test fairly easy for me, unlike standardized test, which throw me for a loop with all the different choices. Wish me luck.

Finally, I have some wonderful, outstanding news! My oldest friend, Seth, proposed to his girlfriend today and she actually said, "yes!" Actually, I knew she would say yes. They have been dating for 7+ yrs and have lived together for at least three of those years. Now I just can't wait for the bachelor party.

This is a picture of Seth and Amy taken last month, when they were seeing String Cheese at Red Rocks in CO.

Friday, July 21, 2006

One Quiz, One Project, No Sweat

Having taken the accounting quiz and turned in my first group project, I felt confident that I would score great on both. Now I have gotten my grades and they confirmed my thoughts. I wanted to start out strong and I did. Whew!

I could feel the nervousness in the classroom last Thursday as we waited for our quiz. Most people in the class had not taken a test in years. Afterwards, most of were smiling and feeling good, a few were worried and anxious.

Over the weekend I saw Pirates of the Caribbean. Great movie! I will being seeing the third one when it arrives on the big screen. Saturday I read and studied all day. I cleaned the house and relaxed as well. Sunday, I got in a good run in the morning and continued studying. I prepared a bunch of food for the next few days, so that I can quickly and easily cook it when I am hungry. Sunday evening I went up to the gym for a swim, but they had closed the pool, due to the rain and thunder. Luckily I ran into a couple of classmates playing raquetball. I love raquetball and had not played in years. So, I joined Adrian and Jason for a few games. My shirt was soak with sweat when I was done. The pool was now open, but I was only able to do a few laps, since I was so tired from raquetball.

Today I went and got my new drivers license, plates, registration, title, and so forth from the good state of South Carolina. It took a few hours of running around to different places, but now I am official. This is the fourth state my car has lived in.

One thing I found strange about South Carolina, is that they have no emissions testing. I asked about it and the woman did not know what I was talking about. I said something like, "you know...the place where you get your wipers, headlights, tail pipe emissions checked? that cars are not spewing out more toxic fumes than they are supposed too." Needless to say, all I got was a smile and a firm "no, we don't have anything like that here. Do they have that in MD?" This is something that will have to be instituted, if Columbia gets to be a bigger city.

The Tour DeFrance just ended yesterday. I don't think anyone from my class was interested in it. But an American won again! It was a very exciting race to the very end. The winner, Floyd Landis, will now be enduring hip replacement surgery. He has been living with constant pain throughout his training and the race, because of the arthritis in his hip. Crazy, is what you call that!

Here is some pics of Lance Armstrong's Team Bike and Time Trial Bike. They were on display at the Discovery Channel Headquarters, located in Silver Spring, MD. I loved visiting their lobby and looking at all the exhibits.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

First Quiz Tomorrow and An Idea

First, I would like to start out by saying that I forgot an incredibly big thing that happened to me in the past 200 posts. I became an uncle in Feb.! My little nephew, Asher, is a big boy whom I have hung out with twice so far. Now that I live only 6.5 hours away, I hopefully will be seeing more of him. That might seem far away to many people, but it is the closest I have lived to home in over seven years.

School is moving along quickly. I have an accounting quiz tomorrow, which I just got done studying for. A couple of guys from my program came over and we knocked it out. I am feeling confident about it.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

My 200th Post!!

Wow! I can't believe that I have posted so much to this thing. In a moment of reflection, I will share with you some of the more exciting things that have happened over the last 199 postings (in order of when they happened):

1. I skied in my shorts and t-shirt on the last day of the ski season at Copper Mountain.
2. I graduated college from the University of Colorado - Boulder and had a graduation party at The Fox Theater.
3. I started biking across the US from New Haven, CT to raise awareness for Habitat for Humanity.
4. I bicycled naked in Badlands Nat'l Park, of five Nat'l Parks I got to ride my bike through last summer.
5. I competed in the Tug-of-War competition at the Red Neck Games in Gillete, WY.
6. I completed my bicycle ride in Seattle, WA after two months and over 4000 miles.
7. I moved to Washington, D.C.
8. I went to New Orleans to help in the re-building process.
9. I quit my job and moved to Columbia, SC.
And finally, something that will be continuing for a while...
10. I started my graduate program at the Moore School, located on the "real" USC campus!

I hope you enjoyed that and I hope that every 200 postings is as exciting and fun as these have been.

School continues...I have gotten ahead of the game in terms of reading. This week I am going to take my first couple of quizzes and turn in my first group project.

Yesterday in my Global Strategic Management class, we talked about Starbuck's and other coffee producers. Below are a couple of pictures of me at the very first Starbuck's ever, which is located on the famous Pike Street in Seattle, WA. I do not drink coffee, except on rare occasions...such as visiting the very first Starbuck's. I believe I ordered a mocha grande with an extra shot of expresso with whipped cream on top. It tasted like every mocha grande with an shot of expresso with whipped cream on top that I have ordered from Starbuck's in every state that I have done that. That is called great quality control and standardization. Take care.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Yes...I Had Lots of Hair

I apologize for the interruption in this weeks Career Development, but I hope many of you got a good laugh. For those of you who would like to see me with all my hair, just click on June 2005 or July 2005 archive and look at my pictures from those months. I like this picture taken at the end of May 2005, right as I was starting on my cross country trip. I got a nice beard in that one. Enjoy!

Today I have gotten my life organized for the next week or two. The room and house is clean. I have no more excuses not to get my work done, except for some grocery shopping.

This weekend I went and saw Superman Returns and enjoyed it. They picked a great person to play Superman's role and the action was great and the story line was solid. After that I had a quick drink with several people from my IMBA program. I have only begun to hear the troubles they all got themselves into last night. However, I left when the bar hopping began, so that I could get up and ride today before the heat hit us.

So, I woke up and was on my bike at 8am today. I rode two hours and covered 35 miles. I was hoping to go for a bit longer distance, but it worked out well, since the heat was intense. Also, I would have had to stop for water since the last five miles was completed without any. Tomorrow and all week the temperature will be hovering around the 100 degree mark. Ouch!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Wow! They Really Want Us To Work

Today the photos are of the town of Grayton Beach taken from the beach and then a pic of Phil, Robby, and I cooking.

The Moore School has us all working long, hard hours. It is primarily reading and absorbing massive amounts of information. Occasionally we get to deviate into written assignments. The projects are just starting and we get to wait till next week to take our first quiz.

I am going to really enjoy my Globilazation and Corporate Responsibility course. It is basically a business ethics course. Our first day consisted of a great debate involving Nike and their child labor and working conditions. I believe it is best to have this course at the beginning of the program, so that it will be in our minds throughout our time here. Ethics is something that is new to business schools and really it is new to business too.

If you want to check out some stuff I am reading, below are some newspaper articles that are fast reads.

“Who’s afraid of China Inc.?”

“Under Pressure, Dubai Company Drops Port Deal”

Monday, July 10, 2006

First Day of Classes

Just to give you a couple of more pics from FL. One is our house that we stayed in while in FL. It was a great location...two houses from the beach and two houses from The Red Bar (it is famous down in that area). If you look closely you my find something that is not "quite right" with the picture. The other picture is one of our sunsets with the Grayton dunes on one side and the ocean on the other.

For more current news...
The first day of classes went great today. Not much was given and it felt very natural to be sitting in class again...not that I have been out of the classroom that long.

After classes I had a quick moment to run home and make some lunch. The rest of the afternoon was spent learning about myself through the Birkman Test, which we took before coming to Columbia.

The Birkman Test "helps your organization maximize its human capital and achieve results that are both superior and sustainable." What does this mean for me? Well...I am learning the answer to that question. Ultimately I agree with 90+% of what is being discussed. The personailty, actions, traits, and interests are fun to look at. The test has shown me a few things that I do not agree with, but mostly has reinforced to me, that I am striving for the right goal.

if you do not know...that ultimate goal for me is to become a Professor of Business. There is a lot more to it, but that is the simplified version.

This evening, my roommate, Shaun, and I went and worked out at the school's fitness center. It is a wonderful facility that was recently built. I have been swimming there for the past couple of days in the indoor pool. Tonight we did free weights and machines that worked our abs, tri-ceps, and bi-ceps. My arms are sore and I am sure that I will feel it tomorrow on my morning ride.

The Birkman test stated that my number one area of interest is Outdoors. This means that I need "hands-on work in an outdoor or natural environment." This may include "physical or mental exertion outside of office confines." It goes on to state that people score high in this category because of environmental concerns. I had a few other high scores in the scientific, artistic, mechanical, musical, and literary areas.

I was suprised to see my lowest scores in Persuasive and Social Service areas, since I have a few friends that would tell you otherwise. Mainly I am thinking of how I always used to try to convince my friend Lauren in CO to come do something. She would call me out on my behavior and tell me to stop, which sometimes I did and other times I kept pushing. Anyway, I haven't learned exactly what it all means.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

School Has Started

I have so much to say and not enough time at the moment. SC has been a whirlwind of activity. I arrived in town last Monday and have managed to endure three days of orientation, while setting up my house, and checking out the local scene of bars.

I have a wonderful group of people that I will be sharing this MBA experience with, although I am still learning many of their names. Tomorrow I start with my first two classes, out of five I will be taking over the next seven weeks. This will complete my first 9.5 hrs of grad school. This fall it appears I am taking eight classes and 19.5 hrs. That is quite a load they have given us, since we will be looing for internships at the same time.

However, I don't want to complain, since I don't have to go to work everyday. School is so much more fun than that, even with all the qork involved.

I have lots of photos I would like to share. I will get them on the net soon enough.

Here are a couple in the mean time... One is of me and my car before moving to Columbia. The other is from my recent vacation to Grayton Beach, FL.